Steve brought up a good, tough point about who can lead a cell and to what extent a person’s influence will reach (1, 3, 10, etc.). I think we’ll all agree that we often miss the leaders right around us. In my book Leadership Explosion I write the following from Chapter 2-Use Everyone in Your Church:
A study of three hundred highly successful people such as Franklin Roosevelt, Helen Keller, Winston Churchill, Albert Schweitzer, Mahatma Gandhi, and Albert Einstein, revealed that one-fourth had handicaps, such as blindness, deafness, or crippled limbs. Three-fourths had either been born in poverty, come from broken homes, or from exceedingly tense or disturbed situations.
Sometimes we fail to see emerging leadership because we are looking for the wrong things. We often look for those who mesh with our personality but pass over those who follow a different drummer.
| Samuel misjudged the Lord’s choice for the second king of Israel because he focused on height and stature: “Samuel saw Eliab and thought, ‘Surely the LORD’s anointed stands here before the LORD.’ But the LORD said to Samuel, ‘Do not consider his appearance or his height, for I have rejected him. The LORD does not look at the things man looks at. Man looks at the outward appearance, but the LORD looks at the heart’” (1 Samuel 16:6-7).
Jesse was just as surprised that his older children were not elected. He had not even considered inviting shepherd boy David to the ceremony. But even though David was a “ruddy” young boy, “. . . the LORD said, ‘Rise and anoint him; he is the one!’” (1 Samuel 16:11-12)
God tends to use the “ruddy, young boys” that are fully committed to him. Our tendency is to hang educational nooses around budding leaders. Yet, the harvest is so plentiful and the laborers are so few that God would have us look at all leadership possibilities around us.
Let’s make sure we are looking at the RIGHT qualities when raising up leaders. Those “right” qualities have little to do with the externals. God looks at the internal, unseen qualities. So should we.